Quillayute, Bogachiel, Calawah, Dickey rivers see more closures to protect chinook

Several rivers on the West End have been closed to fishing to protect chinook moving upstream to spawn.

State Fish and Wildlife posted on its website that the Bogachiel between U.S. Highway 101 and Wilson’s boat ramp and the Calawah downstream of the Highway 101 bridge will be closed Monday to all fishing of all species until further notice, saying the reason is to protect chinook salmon.

“Harvest estimates to date have exceeded pre-season expectations,” Fish and Wildlife said on its website at wdfw.wa.gov.

For the same reason, Olympic National Park has enacted an emergency closure within its boundaries of the Quillayute and Dickey rivers.

The closure to recreational fishing in the park will be from today through Monday, Nov. 6.

The action was taken “due to conservation concerns about wild fall chinook salmon and current harvest levels,” said Penny Wagner, public information officer with the park.

The National Park Service consulted with the Quileute Tribe and the state Department of Fish and Wildlife to determine the need for the closure, Wagner said.

The Quileute Tribe has closed all its fisheries in the Quillayute River until Nov. 6, according to the tribal spokeswoman, Jackie Jacobs.

The Hoh and South Fork Hoh rivers remain open. The Sol Duc remains closed.

This is the second emergency closure during the month of October. The first closure began Oct. 16 and included the Hoh, South Fork Hoh, Quillayute, Sol Duc and Dickey rivers as well as sections of the Bogachiel and Calawah rivers. The Quileute and Hoh tribes also closed their fisheries.

Those closure were because of low flows in the rivers, a condition cured by a week of rainfall.

The present closure “will maximize the protection of migrating wild fall chinook salmon through the end of the run,” said Olympic National Park Superintendent Sarah Creachbaum.

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